Dimensions and structure of the Treblinka cremation facilities

In a previous post I analyzed the limits placed on the Treblinka cremation facilities by the reduced strength of steel at high temperatures. The decisive variable turned out to be the length of the spans. That is, if there is to be any chance of making the Treblinka cremation story work as advertised, the distances spanned by the rails need to be very short. In his post I’ll gather some of the testimonies on and models of the Treblinka “roasts” to see whether they might be reconciled with this requirement.

one span:

Thomas Kues quotes Chil Rajchman from the 2009 German edition of his memoirs:

He [the “cremation expert”] had laid out more than thirty meters of railway gauge. Right on top of the ground a pair of concrete foundations were cast, both with a height of approximately 50 centimeters.

This would imply one span. The English edition, however, reads

He lays down ordinary long, thick iron rails to a length of 30 metres. Several low walls of poured cement are built to a height of 50 centimetres.

Which is correct?

one span with rectangular wall:
Steiner, Treblinka, p. 353 (“four cement pillars two and a half feet tall to form a rectangle twenty yards long and one yard wide.”)
Rajchman, 1988 interview, as quoted here

two spans:

three spans:

The Wiernik map from This was Oswiecim – hope for the exterminationists?

The map appearing in This was Oswiecim, apparently due to Wiernik, shows nine spans, or perhaps seven, depending on how you interpret the ends.


But when Wiernik made his model, he opted for three spans, as shown above. Wiernik also describes the cremation facilities as being 100-150 meters long. But it’s inevitable that exterminationists will have recourse to this map as they try to extricate themselves from the problems arising from the limited strength of rails exposed to fire. It won’t solve all of their problems, but it will allow them to complicate the matter somewhat and thereby try to wriggle free from the vise of truth.

UPDATE: A closer look at the Wiernik model helps to explain this. In the model the roasts are also divided into seven parts, but not seven spans. Rather, there are three spans, but the roasts are braced by eight cross pieces, dividing them into seven sections. However, only four of these cross pieces are connected to the ground, and divide the roasts into three spans. Thus the model offers an explanation of the map from This was Oswiecim, which turns out not to show seven spans after all.


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One Response to Dimensions and structure of the Treblinka cremation facilities

  1. Pingback: Lateral torsion buckling and the Reinhardt cremation facilities | holocausthistorychannel

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